Climate activists take responsibility for fake press release, bizarre award ceremony
Brussels -- The European Investment Bank (EIB) president Werner Hoyer was forced to say this morning, during the EIB’s annual press conference, that an announcement that the bank would give up lending to coal was “pure nonsense”. And this, despite the fact that Hoyer repeatedly referred to the EIB as a frontrunner in the fight against climate change.
The European Investment Bank (EIB), the EU’s bank and also the biggest public financial institution in the world by lending volume, has launched a public consultation on its energy policy and is seeking views from the public and other stakeholders that should feed into a review of one of the EIB’s most crucial lending sectors. The new policy is expected to take effect from June 2013.
After long delays and more than 3 years of preparation the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development has finally completed and published a policy for its operations in the mining sector. Both the consultation process and the final outcome must leave “the consulted stakeholders” disappointed.
The long awaited EBRD Mining Operations Policy was released last week without much noise. It has taken the EBRD more than 3 years to prepare a document which had raised hopes it could improve the bank's activities in the mining sector. Most of these hopes, however, have not been fulfilled.
With annually more than ten billion euros of investments in the energy sector, the EIB can have a tremendous influence on our energy future. If we want the bank to help us “get it right”, the time for providing inputs is now.
With the European Parliament's ratification of the expansion of EBRD operations to north Africa the question arises again: Is the bank fit for this purpose? The Parliament's answer sounds like a resounding 'maybe'.
Following the publication of one official and one shadow report on the Kumtor gold mine, Kyrgyz authorities have responded to the calls of Bankwatch and other environmental groups to take a tougher stance on the Kumtor mining operations. The EBRD should follow their example.